Tuesday, January 6, 2009

New Orleans 1885: Souvenir Books.....

Illustrated souvenir books were one of many popular items sold in cities and other points of interest during the 1880's. The detailed lithographs contained in these books, reproduced from photographs and artists drawings, provided tourists with an inexpensive visual record of their travels. Several types of illustrated souvenir books were produced for sale in New Orleans during the 1884-1885 World's Industrial and Cotton Centennial Exposition, and the 1885-1886 North, Central and South American Exposition. The majority of the illustrations contained within the accordion-fold souvenir books were points of interest in New Orleans, including Canal Street, City Hall, the St. Charles Hotel, Jackson Square, the French Market, St. Louis Cemetery, Spanish Fort, and scenes along the levee. All illustrations of the 1884-1885 exposition were artists conceptions of the grounds and buildings, as the souvenir books were produced prior to the exposition's completion. Similar illustrated souvenir books were again issued for the 1885-1886 exposition, but contained the same artists conceptions of the exposition grounds and buildings, re-titled as the North, Central and South American Exposition. Below are several examples of these illustrated souvenir books, sold during the 1884-1886 exposition period:

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